Subcutaneous fat colour at slaughter, after chilling for 24 hours was subjectively assessed on a scale of 1 (very white) to 5 hours (very yellow). Beef breeds (Angus, Beef Shorthorn, Galloway, Hereford and Red Poll), and dairy breeds (Friesian, Milking Shorthorn, Ayrshire and Jersey) of steer were slaughtered at 30 months of age over 5 consecutive years. The Friesian and Angus breeds were present every year and other breeds except for the Hereford and Red Poll were present for at least 2 years. The beef breeds had significantly (P<0.01) more carcasses with white fat than the dairy breeds. The Beef Shorthorn had significantly (P<0.05) more carcasses with white fat than the Angus. The Ayrshire had more carcasses with white fat (P<0.01) than the other dairy breeds. The Jersey had more carcasses (P<0.05) with yellow fat than all the other breeds. For the dairy breeds only there were significant correlations (0.4 - 0.7) between fat colour after chilling and the weight of kidney and channel fat. The more kidney and channel fat present the yellower the carcass. There was a correlation of 0.32 between meat colour and fat colour after slaughter. Friesian steers had more carcasses (P<0.01) with dark red meat than did the other breeds.

KT, O'Neill, AJ Litherland, PJ Spring, and DJ Paterson

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 53, , 331-334, 1993
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